Friday, March 21, 2008

Five Years of War- Winter Soldiers Speak

This week marks the fifth anniversary of the beginning of the Iraq War. Entering its sixth year, the American adventure in Iraq has gone on longer than World War II. It has claimed close to 4,000 US soldiers lives, and wounded some 20,000 more. Iraqi deaths due to war and the indirect results of war, number anywhere from 150,000 to as high as 1 million, with sectarian violence and a shattered infrastructure left in its wake. Some 2 million Iraqis have fled the country, and remain refugees. Another 2.7 million have been scattered throughout Iraq itself, refugees in their own homeland, often living in squalor. In treasure, the war has thus far cost a staggering 500 billion--some $340 million each week--and may grow as large as 3 trillion when all is taken into account. And the most recent attempts to pacify the country, the so-called "surge," has done little more than obscured the dark realties, hoping to stem the bleeding with a bandaid of extra troops.

All of this, and no end in sight.

Last week, some 200 American veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan came togther in Silver Spring, Maryland, to speak out against the war of which they were once a part. Dubbed "Winter Soldier," in remembrance of a similar event that took place during the Vietnam War, the event experienced a near total media blackout except for alternative news outlets. Small excerpts of Winter Soldier 2008 have been reposted here. Click above and in the larger article to listen.